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The Italian election of 1948 is really fascinating: 8/25/2018 15:04:05


Rogue NK
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It is the first election since the fall of Fascism in Italy. The Italian Communist party was the largest Communist party in the world outside of the Eastern bloc. The United Left (a merger of all left wing parties) was expected to win in a landslide. This would likely mean a Communist head of state in Italy and that was unacceptable to the Western countries that had bled and died to save Italy from Fascism.

Everything about this election is insane.

1. Recognizing the need to stop Communism in Italy, Truman asked the American public to write to their family in Italy and ask them not to vote Communist. 10 million letters were written by the huge Italian-American immigrant population.

Imagine what would happen if Trump had asked Mexican-Americans to write home and ask their relatives not to vote for Obrador. You would probably see Obrador rise in the polls. This was back in a time when the moral authority of the U.S. president and the American people was recognized across the world. This is very usual in a post-Vietnam, post-Watergate, post-Iraq war world. I wish we could go back to a time like this.

2. The newly minted CIA set out on its very first attempt to interfere in a foreign election. A bunch of rookies with no covert experience left for Italy with bags of money to give to center-right politicians. Imagine if today, your head of state accepted money during an election from a foreign government. It would be the height of scandal and yet America has been doing this for 70 years.

3. A few days before the election, the Pope excommunicated many communists. This was clear interference by the Church in State affairs and when i first heard this, I thought for sure that the Communists would win. After all, this was the same pope who had endorsed Mussolini. What moral authority did he have left?

On the election day, the Christian Democrats (center-right) won a landslide victory gaining an outright majority in both houses of parliament which is the only time any party has gained an outright majority in any Italian election. This was enough to form a center-right government on its own but shockingly the Christian Democrats decided to allow the Liberals and Social-democrats into the government forming a centrist government. I am sure it was a great unifying moment. Again, unthinkable in this global political climate.

After a communist disaster was averted, the USA let loose the floodwaters of Marshall plan aid and saved the struggling Italian economy.. After all, the communists still got 31% of the vote.

I also find it amazing how the Pope still held political power in Italy. For some though, the moment when the pope excommunicated communists before the election and then excommunicated all communists the next year must have been a moment that really broke the moral authority of the papacy and contributed to the decline of the authority of the pope. 31% of Italians still voted for the Communists despite the Pope's warnings. Coming off the back of endorsing Mussolini doesn't help either.

Fun side note: To this day, the Catholic Church still excommunicates all communists.

Fun side note #2: The turnout was 92.2%. Insane!

Edited 8/25/2018 15:08:02
The Italian election of 1948 is really fascinating: 8/25/2018 15:26:26


Cata Cauda
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An interesting topic quickly derailed into another US-Americacentrist thread. Shame.
The Italian election of 1948 is really fascinating: 8/25/2018 15:31:01


Rogue NK
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Can't help that all the documentaries on this election in English are US-Americentric.

EDIT: My bad.

Edited 8/25/2018 15:58:54
The Italian election of 1948 is really fascinating: 9/3/2018 02:38:50


Wulfhere
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If Trump asked Mexican-"Americans" not to vote for Obrador, they would vote for Obrador.
The Italian election of 1948 is really fascinating: 9/3/2018 03:24:40


Warsaw Pact
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cool
The Italian election of 1948 is really fascinating: 9/3/2018 03:49:00


Funaki
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Communism is good
























It makes people less fat
The Italian election of 1948 is really fascinating: 9/3/2018 04:29:05


Rogue NK
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^ How to perfect a meme.
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